Sunday, May 25, 2008

Sometimes Corporate America Has More Soul Than Me...But it Will Never Have More Soul Than Madlib

OK, so there's this Dockers commercial that keeps playing on TV (especially if you've been watching the NBA Playoffs) and every time it plays I am ashamed for not knowing the name of the artist from the song they used. It's obviously an old song (it sounds too good for it to be something current) and probably not obscure at all (it's too catchy of a song to have lived in obscurity for long), so why didn't I know who it was? Finally I just did a Google search and found the name instantly.

Turns out the name of the artist is Marlena Shaw and the song is called "California Soul." I couldn't believe that a) I had never heard of Marlena Shaw and b) I didn't own this song in some form or other. Of course my next move was to find it immediately. And after roughly 30 seconds of searching the torrent networks, the target had been acquired. Which reminds me, I love the Internet.

Anyway, when I tried listening to the song in my iTunes I noticed that I already have a copy of this song. Yes, apparently I HAVE heard this song elsewhere and it was courtesy of an excellent compilation put together by the hardest working man in showbusiness, Madlib. To the best of my knowledge, it's an underground compilation of obscure-to-semi-obscure soul/funk/jazz selections from the 1970s called "The Crates". I really don't know for sure since I'm pretty sure I downloaded this from a guy on Soulseek like three years ago while browsing his collection. There's very little information about this compilation on Amazon, Stones Throw Records, All Music, or It's also possible that some fan just tracked down the origin songs for many Madlib samples and organized them into a compilation.

In any event, it's a pretty damn good compilation and I am glad I was given an excuse to discover it again. Thanks Dockers!

Marlena Shaw - "California Soul"

No comments: